“You’re gonna need a bigger boat”: Introducing Steven Spielberg
“You’re gonna need a bigger boat.” People who saw the blockbuster movie Jaws directed by Steven Spielberg can remember that famous quote. Steven Spielberg is one of the most successful and famous directors of all time. Very few people in Hollywood have accomplished what he has.
He was born in Cincinnati, Ohio, on December 18, 1946, to a concert pianist and a computer engineer. His father was the computer engineer; his mother, the concert pianist. Steven had a difficult, confusing childhood. At times he felt out of place because his mother chose not to raise her children in a Jewish neighborhood. He has stated that he was picked on and beaten by other children in school. One interest that he had was filming home movies. He started filming home movies before he became an adult. Steven’s first film called The Last Train Wreck was filmed when he was eleven years old. He also filmed The Last Gun to earn a patch for the Boy Scouts. Growing up he would use tactics to scare his younger sisters to his delight. He would later use some of his childhood phobias of things such as clowns and swaying branches outside his window, in movies such as Poltergeist. Later, Steven got an unpaid job working at Universal Studios during a couple of summers. After high school, Steven enrolled in California State College at Long Beach. He eventually left school to pursue a career directing movies.
Every time I go to a movie, it’s magic, no matter what the movie’s about. – Steven Spielberg
Steven began directing movies for television. Eventually he directed his first major film called The Sugarland Express, which won an award at the Cannes Film Festival in 1974. His next film, Jaws, became a big money maker, and made his name known throughout the movie industry. Steven is not afraid to be patient and persevere through difficult moments. For example, Jaws was a very difficult movie to make, but the hard work paid off. Jaws won three academy awards, and it was nominated for best picture. His next movie, Close Encounters of the Third Kind, won two academy awards, and gave Spielberg his first nomination as best director. Throughout his career, he has won many awards including two academy awards for best director.
He is one of those people who seem to have been living a life of quiet triumph, and I get very suspicious every time I see him. He is a recognized genius and has reintroduced the concept of awe into our lives. – Richard Dreyfuss on Steven Spielberg
Steven Spielberg is a producer and a screenwriter as well. He produced popular movies such as E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial, Poltergeist, Schindler’s List, and Saving Private Ryan. Although he has a long impressive list of movies he produced, directing is what he really likes to do. According to an article from the IMDb movie database on the internet, Steven has said that “I’d rather direct than produce. Any day. And twice on Sunday.” He takes his work as a producer seriously and will remove his name from a production that does not look like it is going to work. He wrote the screenplay for Close Encounters of the Third Kind which is a very interesting read. He also wrote Poltergeist.
Steven Spielberg with Haley Joel Osment on set of Artificial Intelligence
In addition, Steven has the ability to make movies in many different areas/genres. There are the touching dramas such as The Color Purple, and Saving Private Ryan. There are the fun comedies like Gremlins, and The Money Pit. How can anybody forget the adventures Raiders of the Lost Ark, and Jurassic Park? There are the classic, horror movies Jaws, and Poltergeist. Let us not forget the science fiction movies E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial, and Close Encounters of the Third Kind. Finally, Steven has worked on great historical movies such as Schindler’s List, and Munich. In addition, there is still a long list of great movies not mentioned here.
He is married to actress Kate Capshaw, and they have seven children.
Steven Spielberg has made movies that people will enjoy for generations to come.
Written by Rose Jenkins. Rose has written several mini biographies of filmmakers and other well-known figures. More of her work can be accessed here.